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Economy

Senate passes 2019 budget

Nigerian Senate Chamber

Nigeria’s Senate today passed a sum of N8.916 trillion as the budget for the 2019 fiscal year as against the N8.83 trillion proposed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The budget is about N86 billion higher than the amount proposed by Buhari.

The new budget figure was passed after the Chairman, Senate committee on appropriations, Mr. Danjuma Goje,presented a report on the floor of the upper legislative chamber.

“I hope that with this Budget passed, the Executive will also ensure the full implementation of the Budget for the benefit of Nigerians as a whole,” Senate chief Bukola Saraki said.

The breakdown:

The Senate passed the budget with the breakdown as follows:

Statutory transfer – N502.58 .billion

Debt service – N2.25 trillion

Recurrent expenditure – N4.65 trillion

Capital expenditure – N2.94 trillion

In an additional recommendation, the Senate approved a N10 billion fund to be drawn from service-wide votes to assist victims of Zamfara crisis.

The Senate had, in one of its plenaries, approved the special fund.

The lawmakers adopted the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) earlier presented.

Speaking about the increase, Goje said the need to provide for the severance benefits of outgoing lawmakers, their aides, provision for the National Assembly orientation programme, election, and others accounted for the about N86 billion increase.

“There is also the need to provide more fund for the security and intelligence agencies to deal with additional, emerging, unforeseen challenges in the country,” he said.

He said all of these were not captured in the 2019 budget submitted by the president.